New Virgin Hyperloop One Details Revealed at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show

All Aboard

At the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the recently renamed Virgin Hyperloop One unveiled two products that show just how far the concept has come since its inception. The most notable reveal was a detailed look at the first generation design of the pod that will be used to ferry people and cargo. Officially called the Virgin Hyperloop One XP-1 pod, it reached speeds of 387 kilometers per hour (240 mph) during the company’s third phase of testing.

Virgin Hyperloop One intends to begin construction on a hyperloop route in 2019, with full-scale production tests to follow in 2021. However, we still know very little about how passengers will book their trips once the pods become operational. Will people be able to buy tickets online, or would they have to go to a hyperloop location?

A potential answer to the second question may be in the second product Virgin Hyperloop One revealed at CES 2018: a mobile app that’s meant to “simplify and customize hyperloop trip planning.” The app, set to release later this year, enables people to schedule and pay for their hyperloop trips ahead of time, as well as other forms of transportation such as public, private, and ride-sharing services. They can also tailor the app to show them only the fastest, cheapest, or greenest transportation options.

“We’re giving the public a taste of what a Virgin Hyperloop One experience will be like by publicly unveiling our pod and demonstrating how passengers will experience booking a hyperloop trip from their pocket,” said Rob Lloyd, CEO of Virgin Hyperloop One, in a statement. “Every hardware and software milestone brings us closer to commercializing hyperloop.”

Futuristic Transport

Its capabilities don’t end there: since Virgin Hyperloop One collaborated with HERE Technologies and used their Mobile Software Development Kit for Business to develop the app, it can also provide advanced location, mapping, and navigation capabilities for 136 countries. As if that wasn’t enough, there will also be public transit information for
nearly 1,300 cities, plus 3D indoor and venue maps.

As Matt Jones, Virgin Hyperloop One’s SVP of Software Engineering puts it, “We see hyperloop as the high-speed backbone for mass transit networks, [it’s] far from just a pod in a tube. It’s a means to provide a seamless routing experience across multiple transportation modes.”

The post New Virgin Hyperloop One Details Revealed at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show appeared first on Futurism.


Virgin Hyperloop One’s System Just Broke Elon Musk’s Speed Record

Hyperloop Speed Record

On December 18, Virgin Hyperloop One announced the completion of third phase testing on the DevLoop, the world’s first full-scale hyperloop test site. During these tests, the system clocked a lightning-fast speed of nearly 387 kmh (240 mph), breaking the 355 kmh (220 mph) hyperloop speed record set by Elon Musk’s hyperloop in August.

This Infographic Highlights All You Need to Know about the Hyperloop
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During this phase of testing, the company experimented with using a new airlock that helps test pods transition between atmospheric and vacuum conditions.

By combining magnetic levitation, extremely low aerodynamic drag, and the level of air pressure experienced at 200,000 feet above sea level, the system proved that it is capable of reaching airline speeds over long distances.

“The recent phase three testing continues to prove the incredible persistence and determination of our DevLoop team — the close to 200 engineers, machinists, welders, and fabricators who collaborated to make hyperloop a reality today,” Josh Giegel, Virgin Hyperloop One’s co-founder and chief technology officer, stated in a press release announcing the new hyperloop speed record.

Advancing Travel

Alongside breaking previous speed records, Virgin Hyperloop One also announced that they’d raised an additional $ 50 million ahead of their Series C round of funding. “The continued support from our existing investors Caspian Venture Capital and DP World highlight their adamant belief in our ability to execute,” said Giegel.

The company also named Richard Branson their non-executive chairman. “I am excited by the latest developments at Virgin Hyperloop One and delighted to be its new Chairman,” said Branson in the press release.

These positive developments and others confirm that the future of hyperloop transportation is bright. As the repercussions of climate change are realized, many are looking toward the advancement of public transportation to replace personal vehicles.

If proposed hyperloop routes come to fruition, you may soon be able to travel at the speed of a plane but with the convenience of hopping on a train — all with the added bonus of a decreased environmental impact.

The post Virgin Hyperloop One’s System Just Broke Elon Musk’s Speed Record appeared first on Futurism.


Hyperloop One co-founder steps down amid sexual harassment claims

Silicon Valley's sexual harassment problem just keeps going. Forbes reports that Shervin Pishevar, founder of Sherpa Capital and Hyperloop (and an early Uber investor), is taking a leave of absence from both companies, just a few days after allegatio…
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Under fire for alleged sexual harassment, Shervin Pishevar temporarily leaves Hyperloop One and his venture capital firm

The high-profile investor gave no indication of when he would return.

Prominent tech investor Shervin Pishevar will temporarily leave his venture capital firm and his transportation company as he battles accusations of sexual harassment.

Pishevar, one of Silicon Valley’s most battle-scarred investors, said Tuesday that he would take an “immediate leave of absence” from both Sherpa Capital and Hyperloop One, the company built on well-known entrepreneur Elon Musk’s vision for fast and efficient freight and passenger transportation. He will also leave his current board responsibilities.

“This was a decision I came to and proposed on my own accord,” Pishevar said in a statement. “It is not one I took lightly and it was a difficult decision that was guided by Sherpa Capital’s abiding belief in service and putting others before ourselves.”

He gave no indication of when he would return.

Pishevar noted that he was taking the leave in order to protect his venture capital firm and its portfolio companies as he pursues a lawsuit against individuals who he said have conducted a “smear campaign” against him. Pishevar has filed a lawsuit against Definers Public Affairs, an opposition research firm, which has denied spreading information about him.

Pishevar is the latest venture capitalist to leave his firm amid allegations of sexual misconduct. A story published last week by Bloomberg included several women alleging that Pishevar touched them without their consent.

Pishevar co-founded Sherpa after rising to prominence at Menlo Ventures, a firm that placed one of the earliest bets in Uber, now the world’s most valuable startup. Pishevar has been a close friend of former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, and served as an observer on its board for several years. He is also a prominent donor to the Democratic Party, and several prominent politicians have reportedly said they will direct the money Pishevar donated to them to charities.

Sherpa Capital said Tuesday that it would launch an “independent internal review” to investigate what happened. It declined to say whether it would do so on Monday when asked by Recode, only saying that it was “taking this matter extremely seriously.”

“Since Sherpa Capital was founded in 2013, our Firm has been committed to upholding a culture of integrity and service, including best in class policies and practices that reflect these values,” said a Sherpa spokesperson on Tuesday. “We recognize the inherent challenges of reporting misconduct, but note that Sherpa has never received a sexual harassment complaint.”

Hyperloop One, where Pishevar is a co-founder and co-executive chairman, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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This hyperloop company is promising 200 mph travel without the vacuum tubes

Arrivo, the company founded by former SpaceX and Hyperloop One engineer Brogan BamBrogan, announced today that it had formed a partnership with Colorado’s Department of Transportation to build a hyperloop through the city of Denver.

Well, not a hyperloop exactly. First of all, there’s no tube involved, so the idea of traveling through a near-vacuum state at close to supersonic speeds has been replaced with a more modest proposal of whisking along a magnetized track that parallels preexisting freeways at 200 mph. The system could support your own personal vehicle, as well as cargo sleds and its own specially designed vehicles that could also travel on normal roads. It’s…

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